bMS 295

First Universalist Society in Roxbury, Massachusetts. Records, 1818-1951.

Summary Information:

  • Call Number: bMS 295
  • Title: First Universalist Society in Roxbury, Massachusetts. Records, 1818-1951.
  • Repository: Andover-Harvard Theological Library, Harvard Divinity School, 45 Francis Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138-1911
  • Quantity: 12 boxes

Administrative Information:

  • Acquisition Information: Gift of the Universalist Historical Society, 1976
  • Access: There are no restrictions on access to this collection.

Historical Information:

The First Universalist Society of Roxbury was incorporated February 24, 1820 and the church building was dedicated January 4, 1821. After a fire destroyed the first meeting house in 1894, a new building was dedicated September 18, 1895.

Scope and Content:

This collection consists of society records, including notes on the history of the Parish; record books, 1820-1946, containing minutes of Standing Committee and society meetings; as well as financial records, 1820-1893. The collection also contains church records, 1821-1931, including minutes, membership records; Sunday School records, 1830-1936, including minutes and membership records; scrapbook material, 1897-1947, including programs, clippings; and photographs and correspondence.

Container List

Series I. Society records, 1818-1946

  • bMS 295/1 (1) Historical notes on Parish, 1818-1937, compiled in 1937.
  • bMS 295/1 (2) First Universalist Society, record book, 1820-1875. Includes an Act of Incorporation, February 24, 1820; constitution, March 16, 1820; copies of correspondence; notes on purchase of land, May 1820; revised by-laws, January, 1821; minutes, March 16, 1820-March 24, 1875.
  • bMS 295/2 (1) First Universalist Society, record book, 1875-1903. Includes a copy of 1820 constitution; copies of correspondence; notes on church fire and building of new church, 1894-1895; and minutes, February 25, 1875-January 22, 1903.
  • bMS 295/3 (1) First Universalist Society, record book, 1904-1932. Includes copies of correspondence; committee reports; and minutes, January 14, 1904-January 28, 1932. Note: these records document the federation of the Society and the Winthrop St. Methodist Episcopal Church, 1928-1930, as the First Federated Church of Christ in Boston; the rental of the church building, 1928-1936, by the Swedish Congregational Church; and the proposed merger with Eliot and Walnut Avenue Congregational Societies, 1930.
  • bMS 295/3 (2) First Universalist Society, record book, by-laws and membership lists, 1894-1946.
  • bMS 295/4 (1) First Universalist Society, loose papers from previous record books, including list of members, 1874; and treasurer's reports, 1919-1925.
  • bMS 295/4 (2) First Universalist Society, loose papers from previous record books, including treasurer's reports, 1926-1932; and minutes, June 9, 1930.
  • bMS 295/4 (3) First Universalist Society Standing Committee, record book, 1867-1890. Includes correspondence; and minutes, March 1867-December 30, 1890.
  • bMS 295/4 (4) Standing Committee record book, minutes, January 13, 1891-January 4, 1903.
  • bMS 295/4 (5) Standing Committee record book, minutes, January 25, 1903-January 10, 1915.
  • bMS 295/4 (6) Standing Committee record book, minutes, January 10, 1915-January 9, 1927.
  • bMS 295/5 (1) Standing Committee record book, minutes, January 25, 1927-April 22, 1940.
  • bMS 295/5 (2) Standing committee papers from previous record books.
  • bMS 295/5 (3) Society treasurer's records, 1820-1842. Includes pew records, 1821-1841; and accounts, December 1820-December 1842.
  • bMS 295/5 (4) Treasurer's records. Includes a copy of subscription and register of names, January 1820; and accounts, May 1820-October 1850.
  • bMS 295/6 (1) Record book, pew deeds, June 1821-August 1833.
  • bMS 295/7 (1) Record book, pew deeds, November 1876-March 1893.

Series II. Church records, 1821-1931

  • bMS 295/8 (1) Church record book, 1821-1894. Includes records of organizing the Church and of admissions; constitution, 1874; treasurer's reports; and minutes, December 2, 1821-December 28, 1894.
  • bMS 295/8 (2) Church record book, 1895-1913. Includes lists of members with information of deaths and transfers, confirmations, and baptisms; annual reports; and minutes, September 27, 1895-December 15, 1913.
  • bMS 295/8 (3) Church record book, 1914-1918. Includes programs; and minutes, January 2, 1914-November 27, 1919.
  • bMS 295/3 (4) Church record book, minutes, January 16, 1920-April 1931.

Series III. Sunday School records, 1830-1936

  • bMS 295/9 (1) Board of Instructors, record book, 1830-1881. Includes constitutions, 1830, 1840, 1855, 1874; correspondence; quarterly report of school; list of members; and minutes, August 15, 1830-October 31, 1881.
  • bMS 295/10 (1) Sunday School Association, record book, 1880-1906. Includes treasurer's reports and accounts, March 3, 1891-March 13, 1906; and minutes, December 7, 1880-March 8, 1892.
  • bMS 295/10 (2) Sunday School Teachers' Association, record book, 1893-1909. Includes minutes, March 13, 1893-April 11, 1909.
  • bMS 295/10 (3) Sunday School Teachers' Association, record book, 1909-1917. Includes minutes, April 28, 1909-December 27, 1917.
  • bMS 295/10 (4) Sunday School Teachers' Association, pages from record book, folder I: minutes, January 13, 1918-October 28, 1926.
  • bMS 295/10 (5) Sunday School Teachers' Association, pages from record book, folder II: minutes, December 2, 1926-May 22, 1936.

Series IV. Miscellaneous records

  • bMS 295/11 (1) Scrapbook, 1909-1947.
  • bMS 295/11 (2) Loose papers from scrapbook, 1897-1947.
  • bMS 295/11 (3) Loose papers from scrapbook, mimeographed material.
  • bMS 295/11 (4) Correspondence and annual reports from scrapbook.
  • bMS 295/11 (5) Loose papers and news clippings.
  • bMS 295/11 (6) Papers concerning laying of the cornerstone, September 29, 1894.
  • bMS 295/11 (7) Pictures and floor plan of church.
  • bMS 295/11 (8) Papers concerning transfer of Church property to Massachusetts Universalist Convention, May 1946-May 1951.
  • bMS 295/12 Leather-bound Bible with brass clasps. The handwritten inscription reads: Presented to Thaddeus C. Craft by the officers and teachers of the First Universalist Sunday School in Roxbury, Mass., as a testimonial of respect for his faithful service as superintendent, January 12, 1857.